Take your readers on a heroine's journey


EDITING

PACKAGES

You've completed a solid first draft of your book. Now you're seeking feedback on what's working and what isn't, at the big-picture level.

You're in the right place if:

You've completed a full first draft (or a large section) of your transformational non-fiction book about feminine archetypes.

You've edited your draft yourself multiple times, to get it into the best shape you can. You know it's not ready yet, but you're unable to advance any further on your own. 

You want your narrative to be inspirational and compelling, freed from any confusion, digressions or structural problems that might distract the reader from the value and clarity of your message. 

Your aim is to take your readers on a well-crafted journey, to offer them a much-needed shift in perspective, so they are not the same on finishing your book as they were when they started reading.

You need professional feedback at the big-picture level to achieve this.

Are you dreading the editing process?

You've worked hard on your manuscript, and it's taken courage. Your material might feel counter-cultural, raw and intimate, and/or bound to ruffle some feathers, especially if it's taking on culturally embedded systems of oppression.

You might be struggling to identify the problems in your manuscript, let alone figure out how to resolve them. This is causing you consternation, even keeping you awake at night.

You may fear that an editor will tear it apart, "kill your darlings", or point out problems that you'd rather ignore - even if you can feel that something is not working - because fixing them feels arduous. 

However, you're also aware that you are no longer seeing your work clearly. You've been too close to it for too long. 

You're looking for an editor who's not only able to find the problems in your work and suggest solutions, but who is sensitive to, and educated in, your subject. Someone who really understands and values what you're trying to do.

Editing is where the magic happens

Receiving editorial feedback needn't feel difficult or unpleasant. Quite the opposite: it can bring a sense of renewed excitement, especially if you welcome the editorial feedback with a spirit of collaboration and openness (with discernment of course).

I act as a coach, an ideal reader and an editor in one. The upshot of this is: your messaging gets fine-tuned. Your sense of connection with your reader is likely to grow stronger. You gain fresh perspectives that you wouldn't have arrived at on your own

You might just fall in love with your work all over again, experiencing a flood of relief when you understand what's not working, with the result that you feel motivated to make changes.


I offer two editing services: a manuscript assessment and a full developmental edit. This way you can choose the service that's right for you, depending on your budget and how detailed you'd like your feedback to be.

Note: In both cases, you do the revision work. My role is to suggest the changes needed to strengthen and polish your manuscript.

Option 1:

MANUSCRIPT ASSESSMENT

Also known as an editorial letter or evaluation, this service takes a look at your finished draft from the point of view of the big picture, not the minutiae. 

I will read your manuscript through carefully, focusing on the meaning and structural cohesion of your work, rather than your content at the sentence or paragraph level.

I'll look for any weaknesses in the overall shape and logic of your narrative. I will call attention to places that need development or clarification, and of course highlight the parts that are working well.

Above all, I'll strive to help you build a strong communicative rapport between you and your reader, pinpointing where any 'connective tissue' might be missing, and flagging any major issues standing in the way of a seamless, satisfying reader experience.

This information will be presented to you in a 7-10 page editorial summary (double spaced).

It can be extremely valuable to go through this process and make amendments before you invest in a more extensive developmental edit, or pitch your book to publishers and agents.

Option 2:

FULL DEVELOPMENTAL EDIT

This service is similar to the manuscript assessment (described above) but is deeper and more involved.

Here, I'll offer you both an editorial summary of the big picture problems, and detailed in-line notes all through your draft, suggesting specific ways you might resolve the issues.

This service therefore combines a macro edit (the broad brush strokes) with a micro edit (suggested changes on the page).

It provides a comprehensive and practical list of suggestions and solutions for you to implement when you embark upon your revisions.

My job here is to help you capture the vision you set out to convey in the first place.

I'll work with you to ensure that what is in your head is being clearly conveyed on the page, in a way that is made clear for the reader. 

I set out to support your needs while considering your readers' needs at the same time - practising 'two way empathy.' 

The intersection between author and reader is where the magic lies, and I will help you achieve it.

Your developmental edit includes:

  • A manuscript assessment - to assess how your narrative is working, and isn't, in a broad, overall sense, factoring in such issues as premise, narrative goals, structural cohesion, voice, reader engagement, and market fit. You'll receive a summary of around 10 pages (double spaced), depending on the complexity of the edit.
  • Notes inside your manuscript - to draw your attention to areas that are working well, as well as those that are unclear, repetitive or out of place. I will ask questions where I see any holes in your argument, and highlight areas where more depth or detail may be required. If I see parts that might be better off deleted, moved, or kept aside for another book, I will note this for you too.
  • A follow-up 60-minute coaching call, to discuss any questions you may have about my feedback, and to clarify your next steps. I'll request that you email me your biggest questions 48 hours in advance of our call. 

This service doesn't offer:

  • Line or copy editing - that is, detailed last-stage corrections on the level of grammar, syntax, language, spelling, punctuation, or compliance with publishing industry standards. This comes later: it can waste time and money while the body of the manuscript is still in development.
  • Fact checking - it is not my job to ensure that your names, dates, quotes, facts etc are correct, or to guard you against legal liability. This aspect is your responsibility.
  • Proofreading - a check of proofs is necessary just before the book goes to the printer. It isn't time for this yet: that's a couple of steps down the line.

Praise for this Service:

"

This is so much better! You're a genius!

Catriona is a skilled editor and has a depth of knowledge. She can get to the heart of what is working and what is not, with insight into solutions, without taking over. Her delivery style is excellent: she is open, warm and personal, and offers an invigorating blend of critique and praise. She will push you to go deeper, and guide you to write your best work.


Tee O'Neill Writing the Biodrama (Endeavour Literary Press, USA)


teeoneill.com


Payment: When we agree to work together, I will send you an invoice. Payment is via Paypal in USD, with a credit or debit card, Paypal or Paypal credit.

To get in touch:

Please click the contact button below.

It will take you through to a simple contact form to fill out.


FAQ

WHAT COMMUNICATION TOOLS DO YOU USE?

For edits and written feedback, we'll use Microsoft Word's 'track changes' function. This is industry standard, and it's important you're familiar with it.

For coaching calls, we will use Google Meet (video) or audio, according to your preference.

HOW DO YOUR notes DIFFER FROM beta reader feedback?

You might like to take your manuscript to a select number of beta readers before coming to me. Doing so will potentially help you to identify any big problems with your book (from a reader's perspective) that you can fix yourself.

NB Always be sure your beta readers are well matched and sensitive to your subject.

The difference between this and professional editing is:

I am trained to detect holes in your narrative with "x-ray vision," and I use professional methodologies. I will suggest specific ways to address and counter any problems; and I'm likely to be significantly more careful and meticulous in my reading than beta readers will be.

WHAT UNIQUE QUALITIES DO YOU BRING TO EDITING?

Transformation: I place a special focus on your central message and the 'heroine's journey' you're walking your reader through. When your book offers your reader a step-by-step journey of transformation, this provides reader satisfaction, which in turn inspires word-of-mouth recommendations, the proven #1 way to sell a book.

Sensitivity: I understand that writing about the archetypal feminine can take courage, because you're likely to be taking on culturally embedded misogyny. I will not only be attuned to your message, but empathetic with your vulnerabilities and your own process in stepping into greater visibility.

Subject knowledge: I read widely about feminine archetypes and the heroine's journey, and am passionate about this subject. I can offer the perspective of a well-informed and sensitive reader, and also suggest supplementary resources to you, if desired.

HOW DO I KNOW I'M IN SAFE HANDS WITH YOU?

I endeavour to bring penetrative insight and constructive criticism to my editorial notes, while always remaining kind and respectful in my communications. Confidentiality is assured in our book coaching agreement.

WHO GETS THE FINAL SAY?

Of course, the direction your book moves in has to feel right in your bones, and you are always the authority of your work. 

It's not my role to influence, but rather to support you in writing the best book you can. My aim is to help you find and be true to your deepest vision for your book. You can discard any suggestions that don't ring true for you.

If you book a full developmental edit, I add comments and feedback inside your manuscript, using Microsoft Word's 'track changes.' This gives you the option to accept or reject any suggestion I make.

How to take your readers on a heroine's journey

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